Oftentimes, I talk about the power of self-love. The relationship you have with yourself is crucial to the attitude of others towards you, what happens to you, and the direction in which your life moves.
If you love and accept yourself, others will accept you; believe in yourself, and others will believe you. If the relationship with your own self is healthy and fulfilled, you will be able to cope with everything that has come your way.
Louise L. Hay, a bestselling author, speaker and inspirational teacher writes:
“When people start to love themselves more each day; it’s amazing how their lives get better. They feel better. They get the jobs they want. They have the money they need. Their relationships either improve, or the negative ones dissolve and new ones begin. It’s a very simple premise – loving yourself. “
This saying is so simple, yet I have found the simplest things in life are most profound.
This is why learning to love yourself is the first step towards changing your life in a positive direction.
Many ask me, “But how do I learn to love myself, how do I begin to love myself?”
Many share with me that they stand in front of a mirror repeating to themselves, “I love myself, I love and approve of myself,” yet they do not see any visible results, and the stories in their life continues to repeat. Why is it so?
Affirmations are wonderful aids that set you on a new wave and gradually transform your old thoughts and beliefs.
Yet, just repeating, “I love myself,” without making any other real changes, would hardly bring you any remarkable results.
What does it mean to love yourself?
To love yourself does not mean to be self-conceited, overpowering, selfish, and to be disrespectful of others, striving to always be over them. On the contrary, arrogance, aggression towards others, ruling over them by humiliating and oppressing them is not a choice driven by love for oneself.
Inside, you scream: “I’m not strong enough and valuable, I do not have enough self-confidence, so I have to use others to make myself feel important over them too.”
To love yourself means to realize that the most important person in your life is YOU. To realize that the most important and the only eternal relationship you will ever have is the one with your own self.
To love yourself is to know that you deserve the best, to support and accept yourself with all your flaws and weaknesses.
To love yourself means to stop criticizing and blaming yourself. To love yourself means to forgive yourself.
And something very important – to love yourself means to take responsibility for your life and to make choices led by love for yourself.
Only then can you live in harmony with yourself, change your life for good, develop and expand your potential. Only then you will be most useful to others.
When you only rely on affirmations, change is taking place within you, but it is often only on the surface and old mechanisms and patterns continue to function in you.
In many cases, you say that you love yourself and that you deserve to be loved; yet you constantly make choices that speak the opposite. Because the true motives for your choices, decisions and actions are often masked, you do not even realize that you are acting against yourself that you are punishing and thus radiating negative messages to and for yourself.
Which choices am I referencing here?
When you constantly put the needs of others in front of yours. A typical example is when you are driven by fear of being rejected or abandoned; you are making new and new compromises, gradually moving away from yourself and your own aspirations.
When you always put yourself in the last place, it not only points to your own disrespect, but the others also get used to putting you in the last place. You seem to say, “My needs are not important, I’m not important. I ignore myself, so you can ignore me too.”
You send such messages and then you complain that others do not respect you that they are ungrateful and never think of you. And their attitude is simply a consequence of your own attitude towards yourself.
In other cases, you continue to be with someone with regret, gratitude or guilt. You sacrifice yourself for him or her, and you do not realize that it is self-aggression, because you are committing violence on yourself, and at the same time being unfair to the other. Such a choice is neither driven by love to yourself nor by love to the other, and is harmful to both of you.
When you are unable to say “NO” to people and situations that are not good for you, you again are treated with disrespect for yourself, neglecting your needs and desires for a false sense of duty.
T2o sacrifice for others, to neglect your own feelings, desires, and aspirations because of those around you may look very beautiful and exalted, but in fact at a deeper level, you say, “I do not deserve to put myself first , I’m not valuable enough. My needs are not important. ” When you choose to neglect your needs, you do not really love yourself.
When you are burdened with too much work, tasks and responsibilities. Some people are particularly proud of the fact that they are constantly working and that they can take up an official question at any time of the day. But they do not understand why, despite their dedication, they are not recognized. In addition, they are constantly overwhelmed, and their motivation and productivity are progressively declining.
When you spend all your time on the job and pouring in with countless tasks and tasks without leaving a little personal time, your deep inner convictions are “I do not deserve a break. I have to work a lot to be appreciated. I have no right to rest.”
When you do not pay enough attention to yourself.
Many people long for attention and cling to someone or something they could give them. For instance, some people become addicted to dating sites and spend all their time trying to “feel good” and raise their self-esteem.
Of course, there is nothing wrong with people communicating and having fun on such sites. It is bad when they cling to them, relying on maintaining their self-esteem and raising their self-esteem.
The paradox is that by doing so, people receive the opposite of what they expect. They are unconsciously placed in the role of a beggar who urgently needs attention.
At one point, they become dependent on external stimuli, and like drug addicts they want even more of their needed dose. But as they leave the question of self-assessment in the hands of others, and become more biped and insistent, this communication often brings them pain and disappointment rather than the attention they need.
What happens in reality – they want attention, but they themselves do not pay attention to themselves and they are not valued.
You need to pay special attention to yourself and others. Identify a special meeting with yourself, hold a conversation, and give your full attention to yourself. Think what you want, how can you take care of yourself? How can you feel better? You can go for a walk, read a book, exercise, go to the hairdresser, start something new that you’ve been thinking about for a long time.
Because, think about it – how can you expect to feel special if you do not look at yourself seriously, how can you expect others to share their time with you, if you do not spend time with yourself?
You need to change the focus – from fear, despair and lack – to love and self-esteem. Because otherwise, the message that is being emitted by you is, “I am not worthy of mutual love, I am not valuable enough, and I urgently need proof that it is not.”
You downplay the manifestations of violence against you and let yourself be humiliated.
Many people, driven by fear, choose to downplay or ignore the aggressive and humiliating actions of someone to them. Since they do not feel sufficiently valuable and strong, they do not take responsibility for themselves and do not try to defend their rights. They try to “pay no attention” to what is happening, but they suffer deeply and feel less and less valuable.
Through each of your choices you radiate a certain energy that is felt by others. It carries hidden messages, and you attract people and attitudes corresponding to them. The demeaning choice chooses people who humiliate you.
Why would someone do this? Why do people act against their own selves?
You usually make such choices that are harmful to you, driven by fear and need.
Sometimes you think that these choices will bring you what you need, but in fact you receive the opposite – you are increasingly losing respect for yourself, and so you are attracting such attitude from the people around you. With the messages you send, you seem to tell them to do just that (although you say you do not like it).
So, to learn to love yourself and to lead a life of love for yourself, realize the choices you make every day and start changing them.
For each choice you make, ask yourself, “Does this choice make me feel respectable and valuable, or make me feel humiliated, overlooked, used and hurt my dignity? Do I make this choice out of love for myself, or driven by fear and need? What message does this my choice send to me? ”
When you ask these questions, you will gradually discover the answers that bring you strength, self-esteem and self-confidence. In this way, the energy you are radiating will change and you will begin to attract new types of relationships – corresponding to your attitude towards yourself. The circumstances in your life will begin to change, the things you want will happen. Because you really love yourself, not just in words, but you also act by love for yourself.
What daily choices do you make to love yourself?
Enjoyed reading? Please share. We are in this world to help one another. All of us grow faster when we support each other. I encourage others to add value to the world, so we can make compounding ripples of improvement for everyone.
About The Author
Dr. Mila is an internationally known Change Catalyst. She teaches individuals and organizations about awareness, connection, and the need for change – personally, socially, and professionally.